Position:Letter to the Editor


Your article on the new US President George W Bush was interesting and comprehensive. But, there is one point in Anver Versi's editorial where I beg to differ. It is unacceptable that he downplays the dangers Islam is posing to Africa (and to the world as a whole) without mentioning the Islamic fundamentalists.

And while it is true that "Christians and Muslims live without rancour in most African cities", it is equally true that there are a lot of cities, where this is not the case. These fundamentalists simply can't make peace with modern society. And, unfortunately, they contrive to gather the support of normally law-abiding Muslims as soon as they call for support.

We all remember what happened in some Nigerian States, when Sharia law was introduced (this already a violation of human rights in itself). We heard about fundamentalists going on rampage in normally peaceful The Gambia.

And we heard about the more inconspicuous practice of Kenyan Muslims who buy hotel and restaurant property just in order to demolish it afterwards, as they don't want alcohol to be sold at these places. They didn't even shy away from destroying the historic Manor Hotel in Mombasa.

Financial means

These are just a few examples. They all prove that it is necessary for democratic countries to fight Islamic extremists who don't give a damn for democracy and human rights. There is no Islamic state with democratic and civil rights in the world.

Unfortunately, too many Islamic states (some of them even allies of the USA) have the financial means to support fundamentalists all over the world on a big scale, especially in poor African countries. And these financial means also enable them to influence governments and head of states.

The democratic world is well advised to see this danger and to act against it - not just the new US government! And every law-abiding and peace-loving Muslim should speak out against the fundamentalists who pretend to act in his name. For religious tolerance and a peaceful cooperation!

Frank Stennar

Cuxhaven Germany.

* Extremists of all types, whether they be Islamic, Christian, Hindu or Jewish fundamentalists, Neo-Nazis, ultra-nationalists or racists are dangerous to all societies. They must be confronted wherever they exist, but we must not make the mistake of generalising the whole from the part. Just as it would be wrong to say that all Germans are racist because German Neo-Nazi groups exist, so it is wrong to say Islam...

To continue reading